How to Respond to a Name Dropper

Опубликовал Admin
Trying to deal with people who name drop can be irritating - usually because they have other bothersome traits as well, like bragging, always being right and gossiping. Hopefully, you can learn what to do from this tutorial based on Joe, the Name Dropper.


  1. Understand where Joe the Name Dropper is coming from. It is highly likely that Joe feels just a little insecure or feels that his life is somewhat dull. Spicing up the conversation with these famous peeps or VIPs or through brushes with top end brand names may just be about giving himself a confidence edge he otherwise lacks and it's also about impressing you (so be a little flattered that he's trying it out on you). Unfortunately, this means he is probably fragile and liable to take offense easily if you insinuate that his Walter Mitty-esque experiences are just a bit too over-the-top for your liking. You do need to tread carefully, without involving yourself in the game of "who has better friends or brands" or falling for the charade.
  2. Ignore the 'drops'. If Joe constantly mentions local celebrities or VIPs he's met, or the incredible brand names he's managed to snaffle for a song, just ignore it. Not appearing impressed or awed is crucial to the massive deflation of this tactic, so look sufficiently unimpressed. If Joe continually presses the issue, comment on how nice it is that he has so many friends or toys without mentioning a single thing about their importance/fame/special status, etc.
  3. Change the subject. It can sometimes be easiest to change the subject to something completely new. If the VIPs, brand names and self-congratulatory stories keep turning up in the conversation, steer the conversation to something that won't invite the same name dropping. If it does continue even after changing the topic, you can carefully probe as to the relevance of the name dropping. Or, change the subject yet again.
    • A typical way to change the subject is to focus on something around you. For example, point to the food table and ask: "Have you tried this bean dip?" Of course, there is a risk that Brad and Angelina once handed a recipe for the best bean dip ever to Joe, so be prepared to move onto other topics...
  4. Do not retaliate. If you know a few good names yourself, don't be tempted to throw them out there. Joe the name dropper might enter in to some sort of ridiculous contest where he tries to out-do you in famous people known or brands owned.
  5. In an emergency, challenge Joe and call his bluff. Sometimes you're ready to blow your top because you've more than heard enough about how many amazing people he knows or products he adopts before everybody else. In this case, you need a few well-placed lifelines to stop your apoplexy from blooming in full. Here are a few ideas:
    • Say something along the lines of, "Boy, Joe, you sure do mention so many popular people. But I've never seen any sort of talent in you, and nobody ever mentions you. Could it be that you use the names of these people to make yourself seem more popular with the in crowd?"
    • You could also say something like "Wow, Joe! That sure is impressive that you are such close, personal friends with all these famous people. You must introduce us to them, next time you see them! By the way, when will that be?"
    • A response to being such a brand name aficionado could be: "Man, do you own a lot of stuff. Maybe you could lend me some of that some time, I'm feeling pretty cash-strapped at the moment but I'd love a chance to use/wear/play with X."


  • Name dropping occurs just as much in the online context as offline; it can be seen on Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites and forums. Pretty much, react in the same fashion outlined above. Just keep it sweet, whatever you say is printed for all time.
  • Think of ways to bat off the entrée into the name dropping before it even begins. For example, if a known name dropper asks "Have you heard of X?", you can probably bet it's about to lead to "Well, X and I... blah blah". Rather than answering "yes", say "no but have you heard of Y?" Y can be any person you know and you can take the conversation from there; this can be especially good if Y is a mutual friend who has recently achieved something worth noting and both of you can bathe in the glow of revealing your opinions on the matter.
Users of Guests are not allowed to comment this publication.